Skip to comments.Do most Americans want GOD to BUTT OUT?
Posted on 10/30/2008 8:41:24 AM PDT by JosephJames
As Catholics and Christians, what is important in the upcoming elections? What are the priorities involved? Both candidates say they are Christian. Both candidates say they promote a Culture of Life! Obviously no candidate has ever been perfect. The only perfect man who ever walked the face of the earth was crucified by all of us sinners 2000 years ago. So how can we discern properly in this complicated, confusing and critical point, in the history of our country?
One of the presidential candidates and his followers say they promote a culture of life by helping the poor which will help, as they say, to diminish abortions. At the same time their presidential candidate says that before all other problems to tackle: "The first thing I'd do as president is sign the Freedom of Choice Act. That's the first thing that I'd do." -- Senator Barack Obama, speaking to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, July 17, 2007 (http://www.nrlc.org/foca/index.html).
Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council explains: "If FOCA were to become law it would overturn hundreds of state laws that have put limits on abortion.". Perkins points to a new research paper written by FRC Vice President of Government Affairs, Tom McClusky, and he said Planned Parenthood, NARAL and other pro-abortion groups agree with this assessment. The ACLU has said, "This [FOCA] bill prohibits such restrictions as parental notification and consent, as well as the requirement that all abortions be performed in a hospital, spousal consent, waiting periods, etc" (http://www.lifenews.com/nat4070.html).
What is really going on here? They say that by allowing abortion, without any restrictions, we will help the poor so that the number of abortions will decrease!?*!? I do not quite understand the logic here! Is this the way to help the poorest of the poor who do not have any way to defend themselves? Does not Sacred Scripture tell us that the strong should use their strength to help the weak? Does the taking of innocent lives justify helping other people to overcome poverty? Is this the way God would do it or want it? Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me (Mt 25:40)!
The Catholic Church has always taught that the ends do not justify the means. In other words, one cannot justify or rationalize committing a sin in order to arrive at a good end or a greater good. This would be the same as telling God to butt out while we commit a horrendous crime so that we can achieve a greater good, according to our wise human criteria and judgment, as if God is not able to bring about good without our sin! I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes (Mt 11:25).
The other candidate is certainly not perfect. I too am very saddened and appalled at the greater and greater apathy and disregard by the better off citizens of the richer countries of the world toward the poor and those most in need of our help and assistance. I too am against the war in Iraq with all of its consequences. I too was in total agreement with Pope John Paul II when he urged and pleaded with President Bush to not begin the war in Iraq several years ago. But now that the war is already going on, would it be prudent to pull out the US troops before the Iraqi people can defend themselves considering the volatile state of the region with Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Al Qaeda in the neighborhood? Pope Benedict XVI as a Cardinal was a staunch critic of the U.S. led invasion of Iraq. On one occasion before the war, he was asked whether it would be just. "Certainly not," he said, and explained that the situation led him to conclude that "the damage would be greater than the values one hopes to save." (http://www.cjd.org/paper/benedict.html; see also: http://catholicism.about.com/od/thechurchintheworld/f/popes_on_iraq.htm). At the present time, with the invasion already decided (since March 18, 2003), the soldiers in Iraq are trying to protect and defend innocent lives; abortion is directly taking the lives of innocent, defenseless, helpless unborn human beings!
The Church has always taught that a "hierarchy of values" exists, which means not all political issues are of equal value, said Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio of Brooklyn. His remarks drew on the U.S. bishops' 2007 document, "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship: A Call to Political Responsibility." (http://www.americancatholic.org/news/newsreport.aspx?id=62).
Before the 2004 US elections, then-Cardinal Ratzinger wrote to the US bishops to remind them that "While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia." (See Exodus 20:23, 21:14, Luke 3:14, 7:1-10, 23:39-43, and Romans 13:4, and Catechism of The Catholic Church 2265 and 2267.)
Someone wrote to me and told me that the effects of the churchs narrow anti-abortion efforts are hurting the pro-life cause and that I happen to believe we need to come to people in love not with threats. This person referred me to an article by the National Catholic Reporter: Bishops narrow anti-abortion effort hurts pro-life cause!!! But the 40 to 50 million babies that we have slaughtered in the USA since 1973, do we come to them IN LOVE??? Do the ends justify the means as the above article indicates??? Are there no "hierarchy of values"??? Has ABORTION become only something political or something without any reference to what abortion actually is? Have we become so callused and cold in spirit and estranged from reality and LIFE that it is OK to kill millions of babies for the pro-life cause!?*!? What kind of strong delusion is this so that they believe what is false (2Thess 2:11)?
Do we want to hear only what we want to hear, and what we decide to hear and believe, without any reference to the whole of Scripture and to our guide to interpret Scripture properly, the Church that Christ left us with the Rock as the head? The words of Jesus in the Gospels are very strong if we read them as they are written without picking and choosing only the verses that we like and that are comfortable to us! Do we want only a God who is all loving and merciful without considering His Infinite Justice? Do we want love for ourselves and our loved ones while forgetting the weakest in our society that are more than ever, in our modern affluent society, considered a burden to avoid or to eliminate, instead of considering them as a GIFT, a REAL PRESENCE of Jesus Himself? We say God is merciful but do we even go to confession to ask for His mercy? Ask and you shall receive, but if we do not ask ? God is totally, and eternally, respectful of our fundamental God-given gift of our free will; we were created in His image (Gen 1:26)! If we do not ask for mercy, we will not receive mercy! And without mercy, there is no way to arrive to heaven for all eternity! Have we forgotten that all that we have, including our very existence, friends, family, intelligence, capability to have relationships, a beautiful day, even a good thought all come from a God who loves each of us immensely to the point of sending His only Son to die on the cross for our manifold and blind and presumptuous egoism? Imagine how much pain and sorrow there would be if a person that you loved deeply and to whom you did everything possible for, and then this person decided to totally ignore and disregard you and even despise you! Do we think that we are able to fathom how much Jesus suffered on the cross, crucified and forsakened and infinitely sensitive, due to the indifference of innumerable men and women, in all times and places, who do (and did) not want anything to do with their Creator who loves each of them immensely! The great majority of Americans do not take even one hour, among the 168 hours each week, to go to church and thank God for His innumerable benefits! In Italy, less than 10% of the baptized Catholics go to the Holy Mass each Sunday to thank Him in the Holy Eucharist. Hopefully our own pain and grief caused by the insensitivity of others toward ourselves helps us a very tiny bit to grasp what sin is, which we do not seem to understand at all any more. Modern man is auto sufficient and does not need God, a superfluous Being who pretends to tell US to follow ALL of His inconvenient commandments! The meaning of Michael, in the great battle with the dragon and his angels in heaven, is Who is like God? (Rev 12:7; Dan 12:1)! Without humility there is NO VIRTUE! God is totally irrelevant in the lives of the great majority of modern men today who no longer want to deny [themselves] and take up [their] cross daily and follow Christ crucified (Lk 9:23).
As a Catholic, I hold to the words of Jesus Christ referring to all the living Popes of the Church that He founded, the Catholic Church: And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it (Mt 16:18). If any supposedly Catholic publication (or Catholic University) does not submit to the Pope and the magisterium of the Catholic Church, what is the real reason they wish to continue to use the title of Catholic? At least twenty five percent of the voters in the USA are Catholic. Have some of the so-called Catholic publishers and writers (and Universities) put themselves above the Church that Christ left us with the Pope as the head? Do they feel that they are above everyone and are more wise than anyone else on the face of the earth and do not need to submit to anyone or to any Church, even to the Church that they proclaim to represent? Christ knew how much confusion there would be in the world even in regards to interpreting Sacred Scripture; is this not why He left us the ROCK? (See also Catholics Keeping Catholics in the Dark (http://catholicexchange.com/2008/10/04/114056/).)
Another important issue for the elections of 2008, which would take up too much space for this article to go into detail, is that of helping and supporting the most precious and fundamental cells of every human society, THE FAMILIES! Which candidate recognizes marriage as a unique institution between a man and a woman as God intended? Which candidate is in favor (or against) Proposition 8 in California? Or which candidate has been trying to skirt the issue and hide his real convictions and intentions so as not to loose votes? (see http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/07/01/BA8J11I4S1.DTL&tsp=1). Does not every baby have a right to a father and to a mother as God the Creator intended? What will be the overall and lasting effects and results of abandoning the definition of the family as God intended from all eternity? What does the Sacred Scripture and the Catechism of the Catholic Church tell us about the family and about homosexuality?
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., said, America will not reject racism until America sees racism. Today we say, America will not reject abortion until America sees abortion, Fr. Frank A. Pavone. National Director, Priests for Life and Missionaries of the Gospel of Life. (http://www.get2know.info/6901.html?*session*id*key*=*session*id*val*; http://wordpress.com/tag/images-of-abortion/). It is interesting that every time I try to access the website http://www.priestsforlife.org, I get the message: Internet Explorer: impossible to visualize the page. Do you get the same message that I do when trying to access this website?
Pope John Paul II pleaded with European leaders to not discard and abandon Europes Christian heritage as they refused to even put the word GOD or religion in the preamble of the constitution of the European Union.
I am afraid that God will give America what America has been asking for for the last 40 years...for GOD to BUTT OUT of our lives and out of our country as the European Union has already done. But I do not think that Americans have any idea of what it means for God to remove His hand which has kept major disasters from befalling us until now!
God has been patient. He gave us a bloodless fall of communism in Russia and Eastern Europe. Did Russia and Eastern Europe repent after its freedom? No, mostly they remained in atheism and agnosticism as they head more and more toward materialism. Did the West repent of its relativistic hedonistic materialism which has led to not only a Godless society but also to a disregard for the poor and the needy? No. Has either the East or the West cleaned up its near total religious indifference or denial, its revelling in immorality, disrespect of parents and authority, widespread acceptance of fornication, artificial birth control, abortion, divorce and remarriage? Filth on TV and films? No. There is only so much God can do before we WHIP OUR OWN BUTTS!
Regarding America's acceptance of abortion, the late Catholic apologist Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen said, "If we don't stop the destruction of life, we'll come to midnight. That is nuclear war, in which there will be a total disregard for life."
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (Mt 4:17). Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high (CCC 1989).
May God help America, and the world!
Rev. Joseph Dwight (http://god-politics.blogspot.com/)
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P.s. See Election 2008 Pro-Life Voter's Guide From LifeNews.com at http://www.lifenews.com/2008prolifevotersguide.html.
Do not use potty language - or references to potty language - on the Religion Forum.
In all fields and in all churches, the devil always disguises himself as an angel of light. Thus it is often harder to see through the “nice words” and slogans, etc.
“Change We Need”!?! What is really under these words that appeal to so many people? What are the real intentions, convictions and goals under this new slogan?
All Christians must weed out and expose these “angles of light” in all of our churches and denominations. Certainly we must do this in charity, but always in truth even if many will disagree with those truly seeking the truth as Jesus Christ taught us.
I too am ashamed of the ones you mentioned. I totally agree with you. They all need to be exposed just as in my article I tried to expose some of the hypocrisy of the “National Catholic Reporter”. Unfortunately there are hypocrits in all groups and churches. We are not in heaven but on earth. God lets the weeds grow with the wheat (Mt 13:24-30) and the bad fish to swim with the good fish (Mt 13:47-50) until “the close of the age”!
Let us continue to fight for the truth!
Gen 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man
And we have this warning...
Proverbs 6:16 These six [things] doth the LORD hate: yea, seven [are] an abomination unto him:
Pro 6:17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
Pro 6:18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
Pro 6:19 A false witness [that] speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.
I understood Hawk to mean the exact opposite. The phrase "Catholic and Christian" seems a totally innocuous and entirely self-evident one to me and the only reason I can think of for someone taking issue with it, would be if they disagreed with it. Ergo, Catholics are not Christian.
Hence my intervention above, now deleted.
It's a point of view that appears from time to time on this board, although the Mods usually jump on it these days.
If I misunderstood your meaning, Hawk, then I apologize.
My point was that Catholics are indeed Christians.
The first sentence jumped seemed to imply they are not by using ‘AND’.
Sorry to send "friendly fire" in your direction. Getting a little trigger happy..........
First post I made was a jump the gun. I denounced the article, thinking it was an anti-Catholic slam, then found it out it was authored by a Catholic priest.
Still don’t know why the sentence wasn’t: “Christians, including Catholics.” Or something more inclusive.
“But there is a limit and we have been warned.”
I totally agree with you. I think we are much closer than we think to the end of God’s patience!
As a Catholic, I also believe that God communicates to us through private revelations such as at Fatima (1917), La Salette, France (1846), Akita, Japan (http://www.miraclerosarymission.org/akita.htm). There is one that I have recently found in Italy (where I live) and I have translated one of these articles into English, based on private revelations to a woman called “Margaret of Jesus” (http://markbeast.blogspot.com). I am now working on other articles which will be posted when they are finished.
No, God gave us the free will to make good and bad decisions on our own. I want the denominational groups who vote or don’t vote for a particular conservative candidate based on the candidate’s beliefs to butt out.
If you want to keep your freedom to speak, think, worship and live as you will then look at candidates and elections as civil/political responsibilities and that means that even if a candidate does not fulfill all of your wishes YOU VOTE FOR THEM over someone who believes in nothing you do and will in fact work to take your liberties away.
We were not founded as a theocracy, we were founded as a representative republic by men who were believers but who also understood that no particular denomination or belief system should dictate their tenants or beliefs much as the Church of England did or the Catholic church did in Spain.
I agree with you. But each person has his beliefs, just as you do and I do. I vote according to my beliefs. I try to vote for the candidate who I hope will promote laws according to these beliefs. Are you trying to say that each person must not consider his beliefs which he received from the church he goes to when he goes to vote?
You wrote: “we were founded as a representative republic by men who were believers”. Our founders, being believers, tried to write the best constitution they could, and I believe it is the best in the world. But the founders also wrote the constitution after the French Revolution and so they saw that the “mass of people” might not want anything to do with God. Many politicians today show by their voting record that they are not believers even though they claim to be believers! A democracy is only as good as the people who make up the democracy. If people turn away from God or if people turn toward God, so goes the democratic nation. I hope people who truly live their faith, in whatever denomination, come out and vote. It is sad that many believers do not take the time or trouble to vote, thus leaving the choices and decisions to people who are not believers and who are often manipulated in many ways.
I certainly agree with you that “no particular denomination or belief system should dictate their tenants or beliefs much as the Church of England did or the Catholic church did in Spain”. But I do want believers to influence our country rather than non believers to influence our country. Because as many authors have shown, atheism is actually a religion. Why can we no longer pray in our public schools or have monuments of the 10 commandments or a nativity scene in public? Why has the religion of atheism dominated in our recent history? Our founding fathers would never have dreamed of such a prohibition. Our founding fathers would never have dreamed of legalizing abortion either! Our founding fathers would never have dreamed of the false interpretation of “separation of church and state” as it is used today to promote atheism.
But it's all right to ridicule rural Americans by poking fun at their speech?
I totally agree with you. I am amazed though at how many people do not see through all of this so as to be able to get to the real truth. I am convinced that when people do not live the Gospel, even though they say they are Christians, they are no longer able to see or understand the truth as I indicated in the article: “What kind of strong delusion is this so that they believe what is false (2Thess 2:11)?” The saying goes: “If you do not live as you believe, you end up believing as you live”!
I lost more than one relative in this period due to sending my friends and relatives articles such as this one.
Thanks for the observation. I will change my post at my website to Christians, including Catholics.
United we stand, divided we fall. The forces against Christ are very strong today. Let us promote the values and truths of Christ together because the other side seems to be rather united and vocal in seeking to eliminate Christian values from the laws of our country.
It was a very good post. Going around here, I’ve gotten in the habit of being too defensive and reflectively posting.
“God is love.”
Ridicule says more of the speaker than the target, e.g. elistist ridicule of Palin.
Yes it does. And it tells us a great deal about American Catholicism to see the sneering, elitist attitude so many Catholic FReepers have when they make ethnic slurs about "Billy Bob's Glory Barn" or condemn people for their dialect.
It's all part of the "oppressed urban minority" mentality that American Catholicism shares with so many liberal groups.
Oh, believe me, I know that all too well. It's not nearly as bad now as it was 4-5 years ago. The anti-Catholic contingent on the forum is why my husband virtually stopped freeping.
I did not see the "intervention" to which you refer, so no harm, no foul. As tense as everyone is right now, jumping the gun comes as easily as breathing, to all of us. It's certainly not just you.
Good or bad, I can't wait until Wednesday morning.
You cannot completely put aside your beliefs but when the choice is between a candidate who shares some or most of your beliefs and one who shares none of your beliefs and who would in fact try to remove rights and freedoms from you sitting out an election or voting for the other guy to send your party a message is a stab at the heart of our constitution and republic. Your right to your beliefs can be taken away from you if you actively or through inaction allow a candidate who believes in nothing you do to take power. The only reasonable perspective in the current election is that McCain may not share some or even most of my beliefs but he will not or will be very unlikely to make us into a socialist state as BO will. I would be just as fiercly against any candidate who wanted to transform America into a theocracy. The constitution I swore to protect and defend is set up to keep us from becoming both a socialist state as well as a theocracy.
Our country, based on democracy, is as good as its people. If most of the people try to live the Gospel or at least live according to their God with a good will, then we will end up with a government that tries to enact laws according to the Gospel or according to God as one believes, hopefully of good will. If most of the people want God to BUTT OUT, then we will end up with a government that tries to enact laws that reflect this desire to eliminate God from our laws. The European Union did not even want the word “God” or religion in their constitution.
I see this stamped toward irresponsible “freedom” and personal pleasure (i.e., no regard for ones neighbor, especially the weaker ones) and the rejection of God far more of a danger today than falling into a theocracy, as you put it. As I indicated before, the US government has been forced to acknowledge atheism as a religion; this has helped to slow down this use of “separation of church and state” to justify the promotion of atheism since atheism too is a “religion”. In a very real sense, I totally agree with you (about the danger of a “theocracy”) but perhaps NOT in the way that you might have considered. Are we able to imagine the incredible tyranny of a “theocracy” of the religion of “atheism”??? “The truth shall set you free”! Only God can give true and lasting freedom. If we do not follow God and His laws of love of God and neighbor, we will end up being slaves to ourselves, to the world or to the devil. This is true slavery under the dictatorship of a “theocracy” of atheism!
As I wrote in my article: “But I do not think that Americans have any idea of what it means for God to remove His hand which has kept major disasters from befalling us until now!” And I think these “major disasters” will also come from God-less men who have no respect whatsoever for you and me or anyone else as was indicated by the quote from Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. May God help America!